Showing posts from June 13, 2010

Pursuit of Excellence makes Innovation happen

That innovation can drive business growth is pretty well-known. People also have ideas about what drives innovation. A need ... an innovation culture ... an innovation process ... creative people ...

The important question is: What really makes these creative people to innovate (assuming culture, process, etc exist)?

To me, the simple answer is: Excellence.

Innovators are pursuers of Excellence.

This connection between Excellence and Innovation is not often shown or preached (of course, Tom Peters has always done that).

The link also shows that where there is no pursuit of Excellence, innovation can hardly happen.

Pursuit of Excellence makes good business sense

Does Excellence have a place in the business world, which is busy chasing higher everything ... revenues ... profits ... stock price ... market capitalization ... etc?

Tom Peters has not only researched Excellence in dozens of companies, but through 25+ years of preaching, practically introduced the Excellence mindset and practice into the business world.

What does Tom say? He says that Excellence is a profitable aspiration. And he adds that an "unwavering pursuit of Excellence ... provides the basis for an unmatchable competitive advantage."

I hope to share some thoughts in future articles on how Excellence translates to business results.

Tom Peters: who comes close?

Many of my actions -- and perhaps yours -- have been translations of the voice of Tom Peters. I haven't seen or heard of anyone in history with the Tom kind of passion to push people toward excellence. Isn't excellence the best goal anyone could pursue in life or business?

I've read Tom's books, with The Circle of Innovation being a favorite. And I've been looking up his blog every single business day. With Tom deciding to drastically slow down (to focus on his health), I'm wondering where further inspiration might come from.

Seth Godin comes to mind. Seth is inspiring too. Today I put his blog in my Favorites Bar.

It might not be fair to compare Seth and Tom. Seth is a marketing guru, while Tom is more of a generalist distinctly driven by excellence.

In Re-imagine, Tom has talked about his different personas ... "Maryland Tom" ... "California Tom" ... Right now, he's perhaps changing into another new persona. So, thousands including you …

Cut to 1996 . . .

Leading a discussion about whether or not to "hide" one's earlier professions, I "revealed" my earlier professions in the previous post. Here, I add a couple of "unusual" things I did in the past, which were nevertheless important to my employer . . .

Today, Cognizant Technology Solutions is an 80,000-person company. Cut to 1996: you see a "promising venture" as it described itself back then.

During those early days, the company had a rudimentary webpage. Having picked up user interface education at University of California, Berkeley and combining that with my writing experience, I (with a colleague's help) produced the company's first real website.

Drawing on my Journalism & Mass Communication training, which I took in the 80s at Madras Christian College, I also produced Cognizant's first professional employee newsletter. I labeled it AWARE. I particularly like the label because I think it is meaningful, easy to say/spell, m…

Should you "hide" your earlier professions?

An HR professional, who had hired for my team, moved on to another company. There, he switched to a different profession. During a casual conversation, when I mentioned his hiring expertise, he said something as if I never knew him before: "No, I'm not an HR expert. Actually, I ..."
This guy perhaps wants me to forget him as a former HR professional. He believes that he should build his personal brand around his current new profession/discipline. I appreciate it because I've had my own similar experiences. In terms of disciplines, I moved ...
From Technical Writingin the 1980s (here, I innovated a software usability driven approach, which I published and presented at conferences) ...To User Interface Design (here, I innovated a business process centric approach, which differentiated former employer Cognizant Technology Solutions and gave the company competitive edge right from its early days) ...To Business Process Management (here, I created a business process centric…